The total ban on entry of pork and pork by-products to Western Visayas (Region 6) continues.

Agriculture Regional Executive Director Remelyn Recoter said Western Visayas is a high-risk region with the roll-on, roll-off (RoRo) from Luzon freely passing through Caticlan in Aklan. She also asked the members of the ASF Regional Task Force to provide updates on the status of actions being implemented by local government units (LGUs) against the deadly swine disease.

Through executive orders issued by local government units in Visayas to ban of pork and pork by-products from Luzon, personnel was being deployed to man ports and airports.

Aklan created three checkpoints to further secure the province against ASF in Nabas-Pandan (Antique); Buruanga-Libertad and Altavas-Sapian (Capiz) areas.

International flights from ASF-infected countries are being allowed to enter the Kalibo International Airport in Kalibo.  ASF Task Force Personnel were also being deployed to KIA, Caticlan Jetty Port, and Caticlan Airport together with the National Meat Inspection Service (NMIS) and the Bureau of Animal Industry (BAI) to offer quarantine services.

Recoter encourages barangays to stay vigilant in case the disease penetrates their province.

“This is a PHP6 billion industry and here in Western Visayas around 80 percent are backyard raisers. We urge everyone (to be vigilant) because we already know the effect of ASF,” she said.

“The LGUS and the public are our partners in making Region 6 ASF-free,” she added, recognizing the local efforts of each local units against ASF.

Recoter said the whole Western Visayas remains strong against ASF even after ASF-positive dimsum (siomai) was confiscated in one public market in the region.  (RJ Espartinez)